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Environmental Monitoring & Impact Assessment Graduate Certificate

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  • Objectives
    This program is shaped by current societal needs, industry expectations and regulatory requirements. The program strives to improve environmental monitoring practices, biodiversity conservation and ecosystem sustainability on the northern watershed, air-shed and landscape levels. Students will learn about integrated environmental impact assessment and remediation technologies, environmental laws and regulations, and their impact on environmental practitioners.
  • Academic Title
    Environmental Monitoring & Impact Assessment Graduate Certificate
  • Course description
    Semester 1
    # EMI7100   -   003   -   Air Quality Assessment

    This course introduces the students to the chemical and physical composition of the earth's atsmosphere. Air monitoring equipment currently used by field technicians and air quality is demonstrated and monitoring of air pollution is discussed. The concepts of aerosol physics and airshed dynamics are introduced. Students research and design an air quality monitoring program ensuring appropriate quality control. The effects of various atmospheric pollutants on the biosphere are discussed within the concepts of human health and ecological impacts. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental protection/compliance and air quality legislation is also covered.

    # EMI7105   -   003   -   Hydrology & Water Quality Assess

    In this course, the students learn about the movement, distribution, and quality of the Earth's water. Topics include the hydrologic cycle, the seasonal dynamics of lakes and wetlands, as well as surface runoff and ground water flow monitoring. Physical and chemical properties of water and the ecological relationships among the living and non-living components of water bodies (including bethic invertebrates) are discussed in relation to changes in landscape and water chemistry. These parameters are related to water quality. Various water sampling protocols and water quality assessment methods will be practiced. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental protection/compliance and water resource legislation is also covered.

    # EMI7110   -   002   -   Social Issues and Ethics

    This course explores the interconnectedness among society, the environment and economic (industrial) development. Discussion focuses on current life-styles in technologically advanced countries, driven by economic performance with a prevalent disregard of environmental and societal consequeences. Students propose various incentives for life-style changes leading to more sustainable futures. Environmental stewardship and environmental issues pertaining to First Nations are also discussed. Multimedia presentations and short individual essays on various socio-environmental issues enhance the students' learning.

    # EMI7115   -   003   -   Biodiversity Conservation

    This course introduces the concept and levels of biodiversity (genetic, taxonomic and ecological) and discusses the importance of biodiversity to natural and anthropogenic systems. Roles and interactions of various species in ecosystems are examined with respect to system integrity and resilience. Human effects on other species, including habitat fragmentation, gene pool reduction and industrial activities are discussed. Canadian species at risk listed by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) are examined. Other topics include biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, protection of wilderness areas and non-consumptive uses of fish and wildlife (ecotourism). The impacts of global warming, genetic engineering and the introduction of exotic/invasive species on biodversity conservation are also considered. Pertinent federal and provincial species at risk legislation is studied.

    # EMI7120   -   003   -   GIS Applications

    This course gives students practical knowledge of navigation and mapping tools such as Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Geographic Information Systems. Students learn how to manipulate spatial data, relate resource data to a geographic location and make queries of the database using geographical relationships. The versatile and popular ArcGIS8 software is used to perform natural resources inventories, delimit critical fish and wildlife habitat, project logging operations and spatially simulate negative environmental impacts of industrial activities.

    # EMI7125   -   003   -   Statistics & Data Interpretation

    This course introduces the principles of statistics and standard statistical methods used by environmental practitioners. Attributes of collected data including distribution, variance, standard error and standard deviation are discussed. Students practice simple data organization and analysis using established statistical software such as Excel, Statistica and SPSS. Critical interpretation and presentation of the results in a written report complete the course.

    # EMI7130   -   002   -   Technical Writing

    In this course, students practice interpretation of acquired scientific data, recognition of trends and stakeholder needs, as well as formulation of supporting conclusions by preparing technical documents on environment-related topics. Environmental audit reports, closure plans and environmental assessment reports will be examined by independent research and presented orally to the class. The course meets the General Education requirements through the research of the growing impact of technology on society and by encouraging critical thinking through research.

    Semester 2

    # EMI7200   -   003   -   Environmental Impact Assess & Model

    Specifi examples of lakeshore capacity modeling and air dispersion modeling are demonstrated.

    # EMI7205   -   003   -   Water Remediation Techniques

    This course addresses the principles and methods of water quality restoration. Hydrological applications, including the prediction of floods, landslides, erosion, sedimentation and droughts, agricultural irrigation schemes, drinking water provision, design of bridges, dams, sewers and urban drainage systems, assessing the impact of natural and thropogenic environmental changes on water resources and the assessment of contaminant transport risk, are discussed. Students are introduced to a variety of water management problems and practices, including drinking and waste water treatment facilities, effluent reuse, sewar separation, groundwater conservation, establishment of ecologically stable flows in stream channels, erosion and agricultural run-off control. Special attention is paid to the on-going recovery of acidified lakes in the Sudbury area. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental protection, compliance and water resource legislation is revisited.

    # EMI7210   -   003   -   Industrial Impact/Mine Reclamation

    This course examines the environmental impacts of various mining and associated industrial processes, including manufacturing, power generation, oil refineries, metallurgy, aggregate extraction, cement and plastics. Mine closure issues, land reclamation and the mitigation of environmental impact of active mines are discussed. Visits of reclaimed mining sites in central Ontario (Adam's mine in Kirkland Lake, Rio-Algom in Elliot Lake and various INCO and Falconbridge sites in Sudbury) enhance the students' experience. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental compliance legislation is studied.

    # EMI7215   -   003   -   Environmental Physiology

    This course examines the effects of ambient variables such as temperature, light, drought, humidity, salinity, atmospheric pressure, oxygen levels, and environmental contaminants on human, animal and plant physiology and health. The principles of adaptation, limits of tolerance and physiological responses of vertebrates to various environmental stressors are highlighted.

    # EMI7220   -   003   -   Solid Waste Management

    This course provides students with an integrated approach to solid waste minimization and recycling strategies. Practical skills related to solid waste reduction in the industrial, commercial, institutional and residential sectors are learned. Waste audits and strategies for handling hazardous wastes in the workplace are also discussed. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental compliance legislation is also covered.

    # EMI7225   -   003   -   Air Pollution Abatement

    This course examines the application of various pollution abatement equipment and technologies in different segments of the industry and private/residential sectors. Site visits of INCO/Falconbridge mines, Domtar pulp-and-paper mill and a municipal sewage treatment plant give students first hand knowledge of the variety of industrial/municipal mitigation measures. Pertinent federal and provincial environmental protection/compliance and air quality legislation is also revisited.

    # EMI7230   -   003   -   Fish & Wildlife Restoration

    This course focuses on environmental factors that put fish and wildlife populations, as well as entire species at risk. Mitigation measures, management options and restoration techniques are examined. Captive breeding and reintroduction programs of endangered and locally extinct wilfire are discussed in light of research that monitors wildlife reintroductions and uses computer-based modeling of population dynamics and recovery. Case studies involving recent restorations of formerly extirpated fish species, and the return of the wild turkey, elk and cougar to Ontario are highlighted. Protocols and legislation pertinent to species capture, handling, transport and release in new jurisdictions is discussed.

    Semester 3

    # EMI7300   -   008   -   Environmental Sampling & Analysis

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